Charcoal Grill vs Gas Grill: Which is Better?

Mavis Loh Blog

This is an age-old debate, as chefs and novice cooks alike have been debating over charcoal and gas grills for quite a long time. This battle of flame made us think about the distinctive features of the grills and how they are different from each other. While charcoal provides a sense of the traditional, typical flavor that comes from wood chips, a gas grill imparts a bacon-like taste. Deciding on a grilling option completely depends on your taste buds, but when you are a cooking enthusiast, you should know the definitive differences between both.

Taste

Before diving straight to the heated argument of which is better, let us discuss about the taste of using both types of grill. As mentioned, foods cooked on a charcoal grill often achieve a smokier taste. When the meat drippings meet the flame, they become vaporized, and a portion of it penetrates back into the food. But a propane gas grill has ceramic or metal slabs covering the flame. Any food drippings or spices hit this surface and do not touch the meat. An advantage of a gas grill is that it produces more steam than its charcoal counterpart, giving the meat more moisture.

Cooking Time

A charcoal grill takes a longer time to preheat which may delay your serving time and have a negative effect on your party. Alternatively, you could always throw the BBQ task to your trusty BBQ caterer like Sunday Roast to ensure that food will be served right on time! In contrast, a propane gas grill heats up easily; sometimes just 10 minutes are enough to preheat it, and it holds that temperature. But with a charcoal grill, you must consistently monitor the temperature.

Control

Gas grill wins by a landslide in this case as you can easily control the temperature of a gas grill. Once you are familiar with the instrument, it gets easier to monitor, and you can decide whether to increase or decrease the temperature based on the foods cooked. Rainy day? What’s that? With a gas grill, weather will never be against you so long as you have a shelter over your head!

Clean Up

Cleaning a gas grill is definitely more convenient than cleaning a charcoal grill as charcoal grills are dirty to handle, and the ashes are sometimes quite stubborn. On the other hand, gas grills have an ashtray that is easily removable for cleaning.

Safety

Even for professional BBQ cooks, cooking with a charcoal grill can still pose quite a risk as the pieces of hot charcoal can burn your hand, or that the charcoal can ignite or blow up when it comes in contact with strong winds or oil. Using a charcoal grill improperly can even invite a harmful accident. Unlike charcoal grills, gas grills are not susceptible to the wind and remain on the safer side than their competitors.